888 Joins Rank Group in Bid for William Hill

If successful, the three-way deal will bring together one of the leading online gambling players, Britain’s top casino and bingo hall operator and the country’s biggest high-street bookmaker.

The 888 Holdings Plc sports betting app homepage sits on an Apple Inc. iPhone 6 beside a pint of beer in this arranged photograph taken in London, U.K., on Friday, July, 17, 2015.
Chris Ratcliffe, Bloomberg

Online gambling group 888 Holdings and casino operator Rank Group are joining forces with a view to making a bid for the British bookmaker William Hill.

If successful, the three-way deal will bring together one of the leading online gambling players, Britain’s top casino and bingo hall operator and the country’s biggest high-street bookmaker.

“The consortium sees significant industrial logic in the combination, through consolidation of their complementary online and land-based operations, delivery of substantial revenue and cost synergies and from the anticipated benefits of economies of scale,” 888 and Rank said in a joint statement.

William Hill last year sought to buy 888, which is half-owned by Israelis Avi and Aaron Shaked through family trusts. The brothers have built one of Britain’s biggest online gaming groups, offering sports betting as well bingo and casino games.

The companies added that no formal approach had yet been made to William Hill’s board. Under British rules, the companies have until August 21 to make a firm offer or else walk away.